Chana Masala

Chana Masala

This beloved Northern Indian side dish can be part of a vegetarian meal paired with rice, dal and a vegetable for a complete meal. All the spices are available at the Indian market or your local spice store.

Spice Mix

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 1-inch piece cinnamon stick

3 peppercorns

1 Indian bay leaf

2 black cardamom

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

1 teaspoon fennel seeds

2 dry red chilies

1/2 teaspoon Indian chili powder

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon mango powder

1/4 teaspoon garam masala (see recipe)


2 tablespoons ghee

1 medium onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, minced

2 serrano or other hot chili peppers, seeded, minced

2 medium tomatoes, diced

2/3 cup water

2 15-ounce cans chick peas, rinsed and drained

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 lime, juiced

1/2 cup cilantro leaves, garnish

Toast the first nine spices in a small dry skillet over medium heat for 30 seconds. Cool slightly and then grind in a spice grinder. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the chili powder, turmeric, mango powder and garam masala.

Heat the ghee in a large high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and green chilis and sauce until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low and add the spice mixture. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes and add the tomatoes and water. Scrape up all the bits in the bottom of the pan and bring to a simmer. Add the chick peas and salt and simmer uncovered over low heat until slightly thickened, about 35 to 40 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Add the lime juice and garnish with the cilantro before serving.

Yield: Serves 6 to 8

Recipe from chef Amanda Cushman

PRINTABLE – Chana Masala


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